The Flag House was the home of Mary Pickersgill and the site where she sewed the Star-Spangled Banner.Mary Pickersgill moved into the Flag House in 1807 with her mother, Rebecca Young, and her daughter Caroline, and set up a flag making shop.
In the summer of 1813, Commander Joshua Barney, General John Stricker and Major James Calhoun visited her shop and asked Mary to make a garrison flag for Fort McHenry. The flag was thirty feet hoist and forty-two feet fly, with fifteen stripes and fifteen stars. Each stripe was two feet wide and each star two feet from tip to tip. Mary was asked to complete the flag in just six weeks. assisted by her daughter, her three nieces and two African American-servants both free and slave. Mary cut pieced, and sewed the large flag. Her daughter Caroline later recalled that "my mother worked many nights until 12 o'clock to complete it in the given time."
The flag flew over Fort McHenry for a year before the British bombardment on September 13 and 14, 1814. The sight of the large garrison flag flying over Fort McHenry after the 25 hour bombardment inspired Francis Scott Key to write the poem which became our National Anthem.
The flag Mary Pickersgill made is on display at the Smithsonian Institutions National Museum of American History in Washington, D. C.